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On a street named in his honor, a plaque sits in front of the home of former boxing legend and champion, Jim Corbett. The bronze tablet, mounted on a small boulder, was installed by the Bayside Historical Society in 1971.
Corbett won the coveted heavyweight title in 1892, after knocking out John L. Sullivan in 21 rounds. “Gentleman Jim” was the only boxer to defeat the “Boston Strong Boy,” the first boxing superstar and one of the highest-paid athletes of the late-19th century.
Corbett is credited as being one of the first fighters to incorporate heavy defensive tactics into his fighting style, favoring training and technique over brute strength. Although he fought only 20 bouts, nine of his opponents were elected with him in the inaugural class enshrined in the International Boxing Hall of Fame.
Corbett moved to this home in 1902, a year before retiring from the ring, and lived there until his death in 1933. Like several other actors, he may have been attracted to Bayside for its proximity to the movie studios in Astoria.
He performed in shorts, documentaries and low-budget films for 20 years. His second wife, the actress Jessie Taylor, remained in the home until her own death, a quarter-century after Corbett’s passing.
Know Before You Go
Bayside was prized for its semi-rural character when Corbett moved there and the neighborhood is still not well-served by public transportation. His home is about a 20-minute walk from the Port Washington station on the Long Island Rail Road.